Sunday, 25 March 2018

The Star : Aspiring pool stars rewrite 12 individual meet records

By Lim Teik Huat

PETALING JAYA: The emergence of new stars – Khiew Hoe Yean (pic), Hii Puong Wei, Loo Yie Bing and Nessa Yip – in the National Schools (MSSM) swimming championships bodes well for the future of the sport in the country.

Hoe Yean and Puong Wei stole the show by emerging as best performers in the boys’ 16-18 and 13-15 age-group categories in the four-day event, which ended in Melaka yesterday.

The 16-year-old Hoe Yean won the most number of golds – seven in total – when he came out tops in the 100m, 200m and 400m freestyle races, 200m individual medley and the 50m, 100m, 200m backstroke events for Kuala Lumpur.

Hoe Yean set two meet records by posting 2:07.85 to erase a seven-year mark of 2:10.88 held by Ian James Barr in the 200m backstroke and 2:10.16 in the 200m individual medley to better the previous record of 2:11.33 set by Yeap Zheng Yang in 2015.

The 14-year-old Puong Wei also underlined his talent by raking in six golds for Sarawak in the boys’ 13-15 age-group by winning the 100m and 200m freestyle, the 100m and 200m backstroke, and the 200m individual medley and 200m breaststroke.

Puong Wei broke Sebastian Soon’s previous meet record of 2:14.73 set two years ago by winning the 200m individual medley event in 2:12.90.

Sabahan Yie Bing also showed her potential by erasing a 15-year-old record en route to taking the best swimmer award with a total of four gold medals in the girls’ 7-12 age-group.

The 10-year-old shattered the time of 28.67 set by former Beijing Olympian Leung Chii Lin by winning the 50m freestyle race in 28.48.

Selangor’s Nessa Yip also broke a long-standing record in the girls’ 13-15 age group when the 14-year-old clocked 31.60 to erase the previous meet record of 31.67 held by former national swimmer Chui Lai Kwan of Sabah since 2005 in the 50m backstroke.

Twelve individual meet records were set and Selangor retained the overall title with a 27-25-19 finish. Kuala Lumpur came in second with 24-28-21, followed by Sarawak with 10-10-20.


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